While I’m taking a little break from painting, I did have some items that I completed but never mentioned. One of them is what I will use for the Dropship in the charity-based miniatures game Operation Last Train. This game by Joseph McCullough features volunteer soldiers rescuing survivors from a planet overrun with enemies. To get in and out quickly, the teams need to move fast and Mantic’s TAD-65 Hornet Dropship from their Warpath miniatures game.
This model kit was easy to assemble as there were several guides online. I received the model as part of the Mantic Game Night at Gen Con 2018. At the time, I didn’t know what I was going to do with it as I didn’t want to start up Warpath and didn’t really have a use for it otherwise.
Ironically, I gave the model to my friend rather than throw it in a drawer and forget about it. My friend is never one to have something go to waste so he took it… and promptly put it somewhere likely to forget about it.
Since then, Operation Last Train came out and I was kicking myself for losing a perfectly good dropship. I had already forgotten that I gave the model to my friend and thought I just threw it away. When I was talking about my stupidity, my friend reminded me he had it and hadn’t done anything with it. He graciously gave it back and I got to work.
This was the first time I really put the airbrush to use beyond just priming figures. I decided to try out some beginner techniques and taped off some accent shapes and painted them in my customary red.
The lines came out perfect and after they were complete, I dirtied the dropship up a bit more. I really don’t paint “clean” very well. Even my Infinity figures aren’t those precise and clean-lined future tech. Part of it is that I don’t believe anything getting constant use will ever be clean long enough to notice and the other side is I prefer a grittier outlook in life where nothing is perfect. It’s also easier to paint sloppy.
I put rust over a lot of the model and then spray Nuln Oil wash through the airbrush to use as a tint. I did some light drybrushing and painted the windshield and called it good. I think the sealant was spray too close and I didn’t wait long enough after the dry brushing because it looked like the sealant blew off most of my dry brushing work. I’ve noticed that sealant darkens or saturates the colors more so it might just be that my dry brushing was too subtle. In any case, I’m happy with the final results.
It’s a dropship model so it also comes with this crew module. The model has guides to push in and out of the main chassis to attach and remove the module but I wasn’t confident those would last so I magnetized it instead. Otherwise, I painted it up in the same scheme, only adding some caution yellow to the end of the hatch opening. I don’t want my soldiers and civilians tripping in their haste to get back aboard.
The model was a lot of fun to put together and paint up and I’m glad my friend was able to keep it safe for me. With my soldiers done (courtesy of my old AT-43 collection), Civilians and “bugs” acquired, and the Dropship now complete, I can finally start up these Last Train mission and see what my soldiers are made of.